We get asked this all the time, which is not surprising because when it comes to work wear the type of fabric which you wear, all day, every day can make a really big difference. We supply a wide range of different fabrics, styles, colours and brands, so we understand that the choice can sometimes be daunting. Two very popular fabrics for work clothes are a poly-cotton blend and 100% cotton. Both are good for work wear, but it depends what you are wanting.
So, lets begin with the basics, a poly-cotton blend is a fabric that is made up of cotton and polyester fibres, who would of guessed it. The ratio varies from, but generally its 65% cotton and 35% polyester.
So the advantages of cotton is that its breathable, which is perfect if you are working in hot conditions. However like most material, as the thickness increases the breath ability decreases. Another disadvantage is that 100% cotton tends to rip and wear out easily, depending on the weave. From a safety aspect, if the cotton has not been treated for fire-resistance then cotton fibres will burn away whereas polyester will melt.
Polyesters’ biggest flaw is that it is not breathable, and once perspiration begins is has a tendency to stick to the skin. A group of complaining, sweaty workers, is the last thing anyone wants. However polyester is a more elastic fibre compared to cotton, so therefore tends to be tear resistant and have a longer durability. Cost is always a factor when buying work clothing, and we usually find polyester is considerably cheaper than 100% cotton.
Poly-cotton blend combines the advantages of both cotton and polyester, making poly cotton garments breathable and tear resistant. Poly-cotton blends are very popular for work wear not only because combining the two advantages but also because of price. Although it will not be as cheap as pure polyester, generally poly-cotton blends cost less than 100% cotton garments.
We understand the choices can be difficult, but there is no simply answer it’s just dependant on personal preference and work environment. If the work is in a an outdoor setting, particularly in hot climates, 100% cotton fabric is probably more favourable, however I the work is indoors around machinery, the tear-resistance of poly-cotton would be a better choice. Another point is some people can have sensitive skin and find the polyester itchy due to the way the fabric is treated.
We hope this article has helped a very confusing subject, any questions please feel free to get in contact.